The latest CD from keyboardist Charlie Dennard titled From Brazil to New Orleans has been described as a collection of Brazilian songs for an eclectic band of New Orleans jazz musicians to create a unique sound. This sound has its origins in African and Carribean music and it is the link to New Orleans jazz. The album features energetic horns and Latin percussions. All of the songs are produced and arranged by Charlie Dennard.
There are nine songs on this disc and Dennard displays his versatility on piano, accordion, Hammond organ, percussion, melodica, synth and fender rhodes on all of them. He is backed up by Doug Belote on drums, Tommy Sciple on bass, Brent Rose on flute and soprano sax, Steve Masakowski on 7 string acoustic guitar, Eric Lucero on trumpet and flugelhorn, Brian Seeger on guitar, Michael Skinkus on percussion, Gerald French on drums, Ray Moore on flute, alto sax and baritone sax and James Mack on percussion among others.
The last three songs on the disc are the best in my opinion. The song Valsa Luisiana features mostly drums, bass, guitar and Charlie Dennard on the fender rhodes. Africa Mae shows some fine work by Dennard on the Hammond organ with a little gospel edge to it. The song Ganga Zumbi is the only song with vocals with Tatiana Parra out front. This song also features fine percussion work from James Mack, saxophone from Brent Rose, Steve Masakowski on 7 string acoustic guitar, Doug Belote on drums, Tommy Sciple on drums and Dennard on piano.
To put it quite simply, the music is beautiful and is just good jazz. This project is a hit and after listening to this album, you just want to hear more. I will be listening to this one a lot until the next Charlie Dennard release comes out. You can visit his website: http://www.charliedennard.com to find out more on this album, tour date and the latest on what he is up to.